Yes — you read that right! Today under the spotlight is apricot kernel oil. The joy this delicious fruit gives doesn't end with its juicy flesh — the kernels also have so much to offer!
Read on to learn why apricot is beneficial for your skin and how to easily incorporate it in your regimen. Plus, a rich DIY eye cream down below awaits you!
I bet you are going to want to add this oil to your collection afterward. So let's get right to it!
What is Apricot Kernel Oil?
Apricot kernel oil comes from the kernels or seeds of the delicious apricot fruit. The kernels themselves are quite healthy. Several studies are linking the kernels to treating health conditions, including cancer.
The oils made of the apricot seed is quite similar to almond oil with how they are both extracted from the kernels of their respective fruits.
Pressing the apricot pits extracts the oil. It contains many beneficial compounds, including antioxidants, vitamin A and E, and fatty acids.
The oil is very light and gentle on the skin, commonly used as a carrier oil. The skin easily absorbs this oil without leaving any oily, film-like residue, which makes it great for massaging purposes.Read more about the difference between essential oils and carrier oils here.
History of Apricot Kernel Oil
Since ancient times, humans have cultivated apricot trees, which makes pinpointing its exact location of origin difficult. Many believe that the tree originated from Asia — specifically, Armenia.
Armenia is home to the largest variety of apricot species. Consumption of the apricot trees' fruits traces back to 6000 years. The tree was introduced to the western civilization by Alexander the Great and the Roman general Lucullus.As early as the year 502, apricot seeds were used to treat tumors (TC, 2007). In the seventeenth-century, herbalism treatments in England used apricot oil to fight tumors, swelling, and ulcers.
Different uses of Apricot Kernel Oil
In modern times, a variety of purposes use apricot kernel oil. Ranging from cosmetics to medicinal, the uses of the oil are aplenty.
Though we are much more interested in the skin benefits of this oil, here are some of its practical uses in general:
- Used as a massage oil
- Promotes hair growth
- Aids in regulating bowel movement
- Clears respiratory tract (aromatherapy)
For the last thing on that list, it is good to remember that using diffusers will aid in a proper aromatherapy session.
Now, let's get into the skin benefits of this precious oil!
Skin Benefits of Apricot Kernel Oil
The highly moisturizing properties of apricot kernel oil makes it quite popular to folks with dry skin. But even if you don't have dry skin, this oil still has a lot to offer.
How to Use Apricot Kernel Oil for Skin: DIY Rich Eye Cream Recipe
You can add apricot oil to literally any of your DIY oil blends — moisturizers, serums, masks, scrubs — you name it!
Need inspiration? Check out my DIY Rich Eye Cream recipe below.
This eye cream harnesses the power of apricot kernel oil to reduce dark circles and puffiness, leaving you with fresher and brighter under-eyes.
DIY Rich Eye Cream Recipe
1 medium-sized glass jar (or several small)
1/2 cup raw (unrefined) shea butter (can be replaced with mango butter or cacao butter)
3 tablespoons Apricot kernel oil (if you have acne-prone skin and afraid apricot oil may clog your pores, you can substitute it with Jojoba oil)
1 tablespoon Rosehip seed oil
1 tablespoon Carrot seed oil (carrier)
20-30 drops of your favorite essential oils - I used:
7 drops Lavender oil
7 drop Rosemary oil
7 drops of Lemon oil
7 drops Frankincense
- To make this under eye cream, you don't need to use all of the above oils. You can skip some of them or replace them.
- All essential oils have their amazing skin benefits. Customizing the blend for your needs is one the many advantages of DIY-ing your skin care!
- Make sure you don't use more than 20-30 drops of essential oils for this amount of butter and carrier oils, as EOs are highly concentrated and need to be properly diluted.
- If you skip the Rosehip oil and/or Carrot seed oil, you will need to reduce the total amount of EOs drops by 2-3 drops for every teaspoon of carrier oil skipped.
- Shea butter is non-comedogenic and therefore suitable for oily skin. Cocoa butter, on the other hand, can be comedogenic so unless - you have dry to normal skin, you should not opt for it. And mango butter is great for all skin types.
How To Prepare and Use It:
- Begin by melting the shea butter in a water bath.
- Once the butter is completely melted, transfer to a bowl and add in the apricot kernel oil.
- Stir to mix then place the bowl in the fridge and wait for the oils to start solidifying. The mixture shouldn’t be completely solid, just halfway solidified, kind of like soft butter.
- Once you have the soft butter effect, grab a hand mixer and whip for 7-10 minutes until it looks like whipped cream. I haven't tried whipping it by hand, so I can't say if the same creamy, fluffy effect is achieavable.
- Add the apricot kernel and essential oils and whip just enough to incorporate them into the cream.
- Using a spoon, gather the rich eye cream and pour it into your glass jar(s).
How To Use It:
- Cleanse your face. Apply toner, if you use one.
- Apply to the under-eye area to moisturize and refresh.
- Wait 5 minutes or until the cream is properly absorbed and follow up with your moisturizer. However, if your moisturizer is thinner than eye cream, you should apply the moisturizer first and the cream afterwards. Why? To allow your skin to absorb the nutrients, you should apply your products from the lightest to heaviest.
- If made without Rosehip oil, the cream is suitable for both mornings and evenings. If made with Rosehip, you should use it only night time. Beign rich in vitamin C, when used during the day, Rosehip seed oil increases the skin's vulnerability to the sun's damaging rays and risk of sunburn.
How To Store It:
- Keep the cream in a cool place.
- If you keep in the fridge, however, it will become solid - more like a salve, and loose the creamy texture. If this happens, don't worry, nothing is lost! You can whip it up again.
- I like to keep mine in the bathroom. However, sometimes the bathroom can be a bit too warn and cause the cream to turn more liquid. Again - nothing is lost - you can cool it down and whip up again.
Is Apricot Kernel Oil Safe?
Apricot Kernel oil is safe to use on the skin. Since this is a carrier oil, you don't have to dilute it before applying it topically.
Remember, always perform a patch test when using a new oil. Place a drop of this carrier oil on the inner area of your elbow. Leave it on for 24 hours and observe the skin for any reactions. Doing this is a precaution that warns you if you have unknown allergies to certain oils.
For safety purposes, it is not advised for pregnant and breastfeeding women to use oils without consulting a medical professional.
For children and the elderly, it is highly advised to contact your physician or doctor before using oils. Self-treatment of chronic diseases by using apricot kernel oil may also hold serious consequences without professional advice.
How to Choose Apricot Kernel Oil
As with all essential and carrier oils, remember not to buy apricot kernel oil from food stores. Apart from this reminder, here are the things you should look for when choosing your apricot kernel oil: it should be cold-pressed, hexane free, unadulterated pure carrier oil.I highly recommend this particular apricot kernel oil by Plant Therapy. I trust this brand for this oil because they produce oils that are pure, unadulterated, and manufactured for therapeutic purposes.
We are lucky for having such a splendidly rich mother nature. Apricot trees are not just pretty to look at. They produce fruits that give benefit — from the flesh to the seeds!
Apricot kernel seed is just one of the many carrier oils that you can choose from for your DIY projects. Be sure to check out my post for the various carrier oils here — so you can better decide on which carrier oil suits your needs best.
Regardless of how tempting a given oil is, always do your research! Researching on individual essential and oils helps you determine whether it's suitable for you or not.
Do you use apricot seed oil? Share your experience in the comments below.
Thank you for reading my blog. I truly appreciate it!
Stay tuned and take skin care
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